HHS seeks info on comparative effectiveness research

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The Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation (ASPE) of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) is requesting input on approaches to developing a comparative effectiveness research (CER) inventory that captures ongoing CER efforts in the U.S.

The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA) provided $1.1 billion in research and development funding in the area of CER. ARRA allocated $400 million to the Office of the Secretary in the HHS, $400 million to the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and $300 million to the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality.

“[T]he process of cataloguing CER activities and infrastructure will be critical to tracking ongoing and future investments in CER. An important component of this effort is creating an inventory of CER to ensure that patients, clinicians and other decision makers can identify and locate relevant CER in a timely manner,” stated the request for information notice, published July 19 in the Federal Register.

Requested information includes:

  • Suggestions regarding sources of CER;
  • Ways to encourage participation in the inventory;
  • Comments related to categorizing content; and
  • Approaches to ensure the CER inventory is useful and sustainable over time.

“Comments should focus on appropriate resources and approaches for developing the CER inventory, rather than the methodology of CER or suggestions for particular CER studies that should be included in the CER inventory,” clarified ASPE.
Public input should be submitted by the end of Aug. 9. Written submissions should be brief (no more than three pages per submission), and should be in the form of a letter.

“Please do not include any personally identifiable information or confidential business information that you do not want publicly disclosed,” noted the agency since the inventory will be accessible to the public, including patients, clinicians and policymakers through a web-based system.